26 July 2012
The Effects of Technology in Education
Modern technology has penetrated every aspect of our lives and made great impacts on our daily activities, especially in the area of education. The continuous infusion of technology in education has become an unchangeable tendency. Given the increased use of technology in education, much research has been done on the value of technology in education. However, none of the studies have answered all of the questions that are essential to determining whether continuous infusion of new technologies in education can improve the quality of education. Since a clear answer to this question is vital to help educational organizations to make decisions on how much technology should be used in education and in what ways technology use is appropriate (Valdez 5), it is important to explore a possible answer to this question. Currently, there are many experts with discordant views on the subject of the use of technology in education. After analyzing these views it becomes clear that, even though technology has constantly improved our way of learning, educators need to be aware of the negative impacts of advanced technologies and know how to improve the effectiveness of technology in education. The benefits of technology in education are familiar to most people, and many articles are full of praise for it. Needless to say, some of the most obvious positive effects need to be emphasized, which include the following: internet technology grants students instant access to an endless array of knowledge; it enables greater independent learning with the help of internet resources and communication technologies; it allows for different learning styles and makes students with special learning needs become more motivated to learn (Valdez 12); it enables sharing of instructional resources by teachers in different regions so it helps in closing the gap of student achievement between regions (Hasan, Delialioglu, Dennis A, & Duffy 301); it also makes distance-learning possible which disperses education to rural areas and under-developed countries. Therefore, investment of some funds in educational technology should be continued, but determining the level of investment calls for further examination of the effects of technology in education. Many educational experts have agreed that, though technology has brought many positive impacts on education, it has also brought some unwanted negative effects, which educators should be made aware of. It is obvious that technology reduces face-to-face interactions between students and teachers in the classroom, which leads to less opportunities for teachers to teach hands-on skills, core values and morals because this type of education requires interpersonal interactions between students and teachers. Moreover, lively and interesting classes taught by teachers can not only attract students’ attention, but can also motivate students in learning more knowledge which cannot be gained from technology alone. Though technology can instantly bring a variety of information to the classroom, it cannot replace teachers’ knowledge, skills, personal touch and inspiration to students. Technology cannot replace traditional instruction; it actually distracts teachers due to the need to spend time preparing and getting the technologies to work during class time. As shown by the authors Kyei-Blankson, Keengwe and Blankson in the article “Faculty Use and Integration of Technology in Higher Education,” teachers are often not proficient in the technology they are using in the classroom (210). Struggling with technology sometimes takes longer than it would take for a teacher to explain the concepts to students without the technology (210). It not only wastes class time, but also adds a distraction which keeps students from learning (210). Teachers’ lack of clear understanding of the role of technology in education also impairs the...